Concert to raise funds for church roof alarms

Lavenham Church St Peter and St Paul. cleaning up water damage, Revd Stephen Earl Rector and Rural Dean, with Rev Mark Woodrow Curate left and Richard De'ath church cleaner. Picture Mark Westley ANL-150826-115200009
Lavenham Church St Peter and St Paul. cleaning up water damage, Revd Stephen Earl Rector and Rural Dean, with Rev Mark Woodrow Curate left and Richard De'ath church cleaner. Picture Mark Westley ANL-150826-115200009

Following a spate of lead thefts from church roofs last summer, a Lavenham church is holding a concert to help more churches have security alarms fitted.

An attack in August left St Peter & St Paul’s in Lavenham with a repair bill of around £50,000, after thieves stripped lead from the roof which then caused flooding in the church.

There are still 45 churches and chapels in Suffolk without roof alarms. To foil would-be thieves, the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust (SHCT) is holding a fundraising concert at the Lavenham church.

SHCT have already given grants totalling £163,500 to 75 churches since their appeal was launched in September last year and these churches and chapels are now not only alarmed but are also fully insured if their lead roofs are targeted by thieves.

The concert is on Saturday, June 25, and will feature The Marian Consort, a young, internationally-renowned early music vocal ensemble.

“Come and enjoy a top class concert and support our Appeal,” said Martin Favell, Chairman of SHCT. “It is very generous of Lavenham church to offer their wonderful building for the concert and we are extremely grateful that E-Bound AVX, Ecclesiastical Insurance Group and Secure Response Services are generously sponsoring the event.”

Tickets cost £15 and £12 and are available by going to www.shct.org.uk and then following the link to TicketSource.

Tickets are also available at the Lavenham Tourist Information Centre, Lady Street.

“We already have enough money for another twenty grants and the concert, combined with more donations from Suffolk people, would probably mean that we can help to ensure that the remaining 25 are protected,” added Mr Favell.

“There have been no lead thefts in Suffolk since December 4, so the installation of Suffolk alarms is working.”

The SHCT are asking any churches and chapels who still need their help to contact them.

Anyone wanting to donate to SHCT should visit www.justgiving.com/suffolkhct or send a cheque paid payable to SHCT, to The Secretary, Suffolk Historic Churches Trust, Brinkleys, Hall Street, Long Melford, Suffolk, CO10 9JR.